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Thread: HID conversions

  1. #1
    Regular Member raymie.d's Avatar
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    Default HID conversions

    Just wondering about HID conversions. I was thinking about doing it to my car so I contacted the Dept of Transport, to cut a long story short the legal position is that they are illegal, unless factory fitted, or in the case of a conversion, you change the complete headlight unit and also fit washers and self levelling (which makes it nigh on impossible to do).
    I was just wanting to know what other people who have done it think about possible insurance problems (ie. non payment of a claim), possible criminal prosecution (if your lights cause glare and an accident), etc...
    Has anyone informed their insurance? and if so what did they say?
    Only asking as an interested party as the lights are useless in the Vectra.

  2. #2
    Regular Member RobW's Avatar
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    AFAIK

    The wash system and self levelling is only required if it came out of the box with them. I had HID's in the dipped and main beam on my mk4 astra and it passed the MOT no bother and never had bother from the police.

  3. #3
    Regular Member raymie.d's Avatar
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    Hi Rob, not according to the response from the Dept of Transport. It legally requires that Xenon/HID conversion must have a lamp marked ECE 48 or something and must have washers and self levelling whether it is factory fitted or converted. I am at work unfortunately so I can't access my email in the house with the reply but I will post it up tomorrow.

  4. #4
    Regular Member raymie.d's Avatar
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    As promised here is the reply I received from the Dept of Transport:

    Dear Mr Dow

    Please find attached our fact sheet about aftermarket HID (also known as xenon) headlamps. This is also on our website at: http://www.dft.gov.uk/pgr/roadsafety/drs/hidheadlamps

    You should obtain expert legal advice if you intend to use an HID conversion kit.

    The Road Vehicle Lighting Regulations 1989 require headlamps to have an approval mark to show compliance with the relevant European legislation (see Schedule 4 of the RVLR). A lamp that is designed for use with a filament bulb will be approved to the specific regulation for these lamps, e.g. UNECE Regulation 112.

    Paragraph 14 of part II of the regulations states:

    Filament lamps
    14.—(1) Where a motor vehicle first used on or after 1st April 1986 or any trailer manufactured on or after 1st October 1985 is equipped with any lamp of a type that is required by any Schedule to these Regulations to be marked with an approval mark, no filament lamp other than a filament lamp referred to in the Designation of Approval Marks Regulations in-
    (a) regulation 4 and Schedule 2, items 2 or 2A, 8, 20, 37 or 37A; or
    (b) regulation 5 and Schedule 4, item 18, shall be fitted to any such lamp.

    This effectively means that only approved filament bulbs may be fitted to a lamp designed and approved for use with filament light sources. A HID light source is not a filament bulb and therefore cannot be used in a halogen lamp.

    The above basically prohibits the use of HID conversion kits, whether or not headlamp cleaners or automatic levelling are fitted.

    As stated in the factsheet, the only legal way to convert a vehicle to HID is to remove the existing lamp units (by lamp unit I mean the entire lamp including reflectors, lenses etc. not just the bulb) and replacing it with a lamp unit that has an approval mark to show it was approved for use with HID light sources, in this case UNECE Regulation 98.

    Once this is done there is then the issue of headlamp cleaners and automatic levelling. The RVLR require that headlamps should not be used so as to cause undue dazzle or discomfort to other persons using the road, Part III Para 27. Due to the high intensity of HID lights, they will cause dazzle if dirt accumulates on the lens or they become mis-aimed under different loading conditions. In our view the only way of preventing dazzle, and so complying with the regulations, is to fit automatic headlamp levelling and headlamp washers. This is already the accepted approach in European regulations, see UNECE Regulation 48.

    Finally, there are good safety reasons not to put a HID light source into a lamp designed for halogen bulbs. Recent tests carried out by the Department on two such kits showed that, although they produced a beam pattern that might pass the visual MOT test, the actual light intensity at specific points in the beam pattern that are controlled to minimise dazzle exceeded the minimum allowable values by a considerable margin. In addition these lights tended to put too much light directly in front of the vehicle rather than "throwing" it down the road where it is needed. This will tend to draw the driver’s eye away from the distant road scene and give them less time to react to obstacles in the road.

    Yours sincerely

    Jillian Smith
    DfT – Transport Technology and Standards


    A bit long winded but they certainly view them as illegal. I just can't get away with how bad the standard lights are in the Vectra even after fitting Philips Xtreme bulbs which are better but not by much.

  5. #5
    Regular Member parapaul's Avatar
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    You're right - technically they ARE illegal. However, because the Vectra has projector style headlamps, there's no glare or dazzle from HID bulbs. As long as they're properly adjusted, they'll pass the MOT no problem. Just don't go for ill 10,000K purple bulbs and make it too obvious!

  6. #6
    Regular Member mat100edt's Avatar
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    i have after market HID's and mine passed MOT no probs.

  7. #7
    Regular Member big rich's Avatar
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    Trim : Full heated leather

    Engine : 3200

    Year : 2004

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by raymie.d View Post
    As promised here is the reply I received from the Dept of Transport:

    Dear Mr Dow

    Please find attached our fact sheet about aftermarket HID (also known as xenon) headlamps. This is also on our website at: http://www.dft.gov.uk/pgr/roadsafety/drs/hidheadlamps

    You should obtain expert legal advice if you intend to use an HID conversion kit.

    The Road Vehicle Lighting Regulations 1989 require headlamps to have an approval mark to show compliance with the relevant European legislation (see Schedule 4 of the RVLR). A lamp that is designed for use with a filament bulb will be approved to the specific regulation for these lamps, e.g. UNECE Regulation 112.

    Paragraph 14 of part II of the regulations states:

    Filament lamps
    14.—(1) Where a motor vehicle first used on or after 1st April 1986 or any trailer manufactured on or after 1st October 1985 is equipped with any lamp of a type that is required by any Schedule to these Regulations to be marked with an approval mark, no filament lamp other than a filament lamp referred to in the Designation of Approval Marks Regulations in-
    (a) regulation 4 and Schedule 2, items 2 or 2A, 8, 20, 37 or 37A; or
    (b) regulation 5 and Schedule 4, item 18, shall be fitted to any such lamp.

    This effectively means that only approved filament bulbs may be fitted to a lamp designed and approved for use with filament light sources. A HID light source is not a filament bulb and therefore cannot be used in a halogen lamp.

    The above basically prohibits the use of HID conversion kits, whether or not headlamp cleaners or automatic levelling are fitted.

    As stated in the factsheet, the only legal way to convert a vehicle to HID is to remove the existing lamp units (by lamp unit I mean the entire lamp including reflectors, lenses etc. not just the bulb) and replacing it with a lamp unit that has an approval mark to show it was approved for use with HID light sources, in this case UNECE Regulation 98.

    Once this is done there is then the issue of headlamp cleaners and automatic levelling. The RVLR require that headlamps should not be used so as to cause undue dazzle or discomfort to other persons using the road, Part III Para 27. Due to the high intensity of HID lights, they will cause dazzle if dirt accumulates on the lens or they become mis-aimed under different loading conditions. In our view the only way of preventing dazzle, and so complying with the regulations, is to fit automatic headlamp levelling and headlamp washers. This is already the accepted approach in European regulations, see UNECE Regulation 48.

    Finally, there are good safety reasons not to put a HID light source into a lamp designed for halogen bulbs. Recent tests carried out by the Department on two such kits showed that, although they produced a beam pattern that might pass the visual MOT test, the actual light intensity at specific points in the beam pattern that are controlled to minimise dazzle exceeded the minimum allowable values by a considerable margin. In addition these lights tended to put too much light directly in front of the vehicle rather than "throwing" it down the road where it is needed. This will tend to draw the driver’s eye away from the distant road scene and give them less time to react to obstacles in the road.

    Yours sincerely

    Jillian Smith
    DfT – Transport Technology and Standards

    A bit long winded but they certainly view them as illegal. I just can't get away with how bad the standard lights are in the Vectra even after fitting Philips Xtreme bulbs which are better but not by much.
    well you learn something new everyday

    i still want some tho, i am going to go for 6000 ones as they seem to look good with out takin the pi55

  8. #8
    Regular Member oldgit21's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by raymie.d View Post
    As promised here is the reply I received from the Dept of Transport:

    Dear Mr Dow

    Please find attached our fact sheet about aftermarket HID (also known as xenon) headlamps. This is also on our website at: http://www.dft.gov.uk/pgr/roadsafety/drs/hidheadlamps

    You should obtain expert legal advice if you intend to use an HID conversion kit.

    The Road Vehicle Lighting Regulations 1989 require headlamps to have an approval mark to show compliance with the relevant European legislation (see Schedule 4 of the RVLR). A lamp that is designed for use with a filament bulb will be approved to the specific regulation for these lamps, e.g. UNECE Regulation 112.

    Paragraph 14 of part II of the regulations states:

    Filament lamps
    14.—(1) Where a motor vehicle first used on or after 1st April 1986 or any trailer manufactured on or after 1st October 1985 is equipped with any lamp of a type that is required by any Schedule to these Regulations to be marked with an approval mark, no filament lamp other than a filament lamp referred to in the Designation of Approval Marks Regulations in-
    (a) regulation 4 and Schedule 2, items 2 or 2A, 8, 20, 37 or 37A; or
    (b) regulation 5 and Schedule 4, item 18, shall be fitted to any such lamp.

    This effectively means that only approved filament bulbs may be fitted to a lamp designed and approved for use with filament light sources. A HID light source is not a filament bulb and therefore cannot be used in a halogen lamp.

    The above basically prohibits the use of HID conversion kits, whether or not headlamp cleaners or automatic levelling are fitted.

    As stated in the factsheet, the only legal way to convert a vehicle to HID is to remove the existing lamp units (by lamp unit I mean the entire lamp including reflectors, lenses etc. not just the bulb) and replacing it with a lamp unit that has an approval mark to show it was approved for use with HID light sources, in this case UNECE Regulation 98.

    Once this is done there is then the issue of headlamp cleaners and automatic levelling. The RVLR require that headlamps should not be used so as to cause undue dazzle or discomfort to other persons using the road, Part III Para 27. Due to the high intensity of HID lights, they will cause dazzle if dirt accumulates on the lens or they become mis-aimed under different loading conditions. In our view the only way of preventing dazzle, and so complying with the regulations, is to fit automatic headlamp levelling and headlamp washers. This is already the accepted approach in European regulations, see UNECE Regulation 48.

    Finally, there are good safety reasons not to put a HID light source into a lamp designed for halogen bulbs. Recent tests carried out by the Department on two such kits showed that, although they produced a beam pattern that might pass the visual MOT test, the actual light intensity at specific points in the beam pattern that are controlled to minimise dazzle exceeded the minimum allowable values by a considerable margin. In addition these lights tended to put too much light directly in front of the vehicle rather than "throwing" it down the road where it is needed. This will tend to draw the driver’s eye away from the distant road scene and give them less time to react to obstacles in the road.

    Yours sincerely

    Jillian Smith
    DfT – Transport Technology and Standards

    A bit long winded but they certainly view them as illegal. .
    Members have known for some time that HID kits for Vectra's were totally ILLEGAL. To remain within the law, and to not be seen to promote anything that is Illegal I suggest that this type of thread is most inappropiate and should be deleted. In view of the illegality of fitting after market Hids to Veccies, I think to comply with the law the forum should be seen to dis-courage any breaches of the law such as fitting these HID kits. JMO and the long arm of the law.

    We are either law abiding or we are not!

  9. #9
    Regular Member Tadpole's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by oldgit21 View Post
    Members have known for some time that HID kits for Vectra's were totally ILLEGAL. To remain within the law, and to not be seen to promote anything that is Illegal I suggest that this type of thread is most inappropiate and should be deleted. In view of the illegality of fitting after market Hids to Veccies, I think to comply with the law the forum should be seen to dis-courage any breaches of the law such as fitting these HID kits. JMO and the long arm of the law.

    We are either law abiding or we are not!
    How can you say we are promoting anything surely it’s a ‘forum’ for discussion, much the same as any modification? It’s called choice & a free one at that. As for the ‘long arm of the law’ or MOT again it down to the individual to decide. Tosh…
    Last edited by Tadpole; 3rd February 2009 at 15:25.

  10. #10
    Regular Member leonvectrac's Avatar
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    am just thinking if they are so illegal wouldnt the law tell mot testers not to pass any car with hids fitted??!!!

    am still gona fit mine once my headlight gets sorted

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